How are intracranial hematomas categorized in traumatic brain injury (TBI)?

Updated: Feb 01, 2018
  • Author: Percival H Pangilinan, Jr, MD; Chief Editor: Stephen Kishner, MD, MHA  more...
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Intracranial hematoma is the most common cause of death and clinical deterioration after TBI. Hematomas are categorized as follows [2] :

  • Epidural hematomas - These are usually caused by fracture of the temporal bone and rupture of the middle meningeal artery. With epidural hematomas, clotted blood collects between the bone and the dura. Because the source of bleeding is arterial, this type of hematoma can grow quickly and create pressure against the brain tissue.

  • Subdural hematomas - Such hematomas are usually caused by rupture of the bridging veins in the subdural space. They can grow large enough to act as mass lesions, and they are associated with high morbidity and mortality rates.

  • Subarachnoid hematomas - These result from damage to blood vessels in the posterior fossa stalk.

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